Photograph of the ruins at Vijayanagara from the 'Photographs to Illustrate the Ancient Architecture of Southern Indian' collection, taken by Edmund David Lyon in c. 1868. Vijayanagara, the City of Victory, was the most powerful Hindu kingdom in Southern India from 1336 until the defeat by the Muslim armies in 1565. It was built on the bank of the Tungabhadra River and is surrounded by granite hills. The ruins of this vast royal city incorporate distinct zones and are divided into two main groups, the sacred centre and the royal centre. This photograph is a view looking towards two-storeyed gateway on the summit of Hemakuta Hill, with several small temples in the foreground. Lyon wrote that '...the view here shown...gives an excellent idea of the manner in which the rocks and porches are scattered about all over the face of this hill. In many of the porches a portion is enclosed, forming a small sanctuary, with the image of some god inside, and a small cupola over it, as seen in the foreground of this view.'